In a fiery speech Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Rodham Clinton argues that deep seated religious beliefs must be changed so that everyone can enjoy full participation in every aspect of society.
Clinton, speaking in Manhattan on Thursday at the sixth annual Women in The World Summit, declared that “deep-seated cultural codes, religious beliefs and structural biases” must be changed both in the U.S. and around the world in order to achieve social justice.
Clinton, after discussing the pressing social justice issues of domestic violence and women’s reproductive health, said:
Laws have to be backed up with resources and political will. And deep-seated cultural codes, religious beliefs and structural biases have to be changed.
As I have said and as I believe, the advancement of the full participation of women and girls in every aspect of their societies is the great unfinished business of the 21st century and not just for women but for everyone — and not just in far away countries but right here in the United States.
Clinton’s astute observation was met with thunderous applause.
Delivering the keynote speech at the Women in the World Summit in Manhattan, Clinton paid particular attention to the rights and opportunities, political and otherwise, of women and girls around the world.
Clinton also chastised Republican presidential hopefuls for their failure to support equal rights for all, and their dismal record on women’s rights. Clinton said:
We have to have leaders who recognize that the time has come. There are those who offer themselves as leaders who take a very different view. There are those who offer themselves as leaders who see nothing wrong with denying women equal pay. There are those who offer themselves as leaders who would defund the country’s leading provider of family planning and want to let health insurance companies once again charge women just because of our gender.
Clinton is correct to call out Republicans. The Republican war on women, promoted by the conservative Christian establishment, must be defeated.
By daring to state the obvious, by daring to say that deep seated religious beliefs must be changed, both in the U.S. and around the world, Clinton is taking a bold stand for social justice, and the progressive, secular values upon which this nation was founded.
Watch Clinton’s speech (Significant excerpt begins at 8:26):